WATERLOO — Come back hard. Come back motivated.
Those were the words of Waterloo’s Griffin Ness Friday night after a disappointing 3-2 overtime loss to Sioux Falls in a best-of-five United States Hockey League Clark Cup playoff opener at Young Arena,
Saturday in game two, the Black Hawks were motivated, and they played a hard game.
Physical and aggressive from the start, Waterloo scored four power-play goals in a game where 23 penalties were issued. The Black Hawks rolled to a 6-0 victory over the Stampede to even the series at 1-game apiece
“That is pretty much what we had to do,” said defenseman Hank Sorensen, who had a goal and an assist. “We flushed it down (last night’s OT loss) and it’s a five game series. We knew if we won we’d be all right.”
It was the response Waterloo was hoping for and nearly mirrored a performance a season ago when the Black Hawks lost their Western Conference semifinal opener only to shut out Lincoln, 3-0, at home and then proceeded to go to Lincoln and win games three and four en route to series victory.
Matej Blumel scored twice and Sorensen, Brehdan Engum and Teddy Lagerback once each for the Black Hawks.
Both of Blumel’s goals came on the power play as did Sorensen’s and Engum’s.
“It is a series, right,” O’Handley said. “I thought we were fortunate to get some goals by a guy who played extremely well the night before. I thought it was a good rebound by our group.”
Evan Fear posted the 14th playoff shutout in Black Hawks history by turning aside 26 shots.
“I think we competed a lot harder, played a full 60 minutes,” Fear said. “Tonight we were the better team and we’ve just got to keep it rolling into games three and four.”
Waterloo set the tone early
Matt Cameron scored first after he was set up by a nice effort by Vladislav Firstov in the Waterloo zone. Firstov won a puck deep in the Black Hawks’ corner, carried it through neutral ice where he got it to Kyle Haskins, Haskins dumped it to Cameron and he found the back of the net with a great wrist shot over the stick shoulder of Jaxson Stauber just 4:59 in.
Hank Sorensen made it 2-0 with a power play goal with just 3:03 left in the first. Wyatt Schingoethe lifted a pass to Sorensen, who coasted toward the slot before ripping home a blistering shot.
That power-play goal was just a sign of more to come.
“The power play was good. I thought we had some urgency and bite to our power play,” O’Handley said.
In a physical and emotional second period that saw 10 penalties issued, Waterloo was able to extend its lead to 4-0 on its second and third power-play goals of the game.
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Defenseman Engum’s blast from the point found its way through several players and into the back of the net for a 3-0 lead with 9:29 left. Then 2 1/2 minutes later, Matej Blumel was able to get a stick on a nice backhand pass by Schingeothe while being dragged to the ice from behind for a 4-0 lead.
“It was a pretty good team effort,” O’Handley said. “Some individual guys got on the score sheet, but you don’t get on the score sheet unless it is a team effort. I thought we checked better tonight, and we were able to turn pucks over and when you can do that anything is possible.”
Lagerback made it 5-0 5:29 into the third when Stampede back-up goalie Josh Langford played a puck behind the net, but passed it directly to Lagerback, whose shot beat Langford back to the net. Blumel scored his second with 9:52 left in the game.
Games three and four will be in Sioux Falls Tuesday and Wednesday.
“It is now a best of three, and we have to come up with something over there,” O’Handley said. “They are a good club. Same motto we’ve had all year long ... one day at a time and we will enjoy this one for a hour or two and get back to work.”
Waterloo 6, Sioux Falls 0
SCORE BY PERIODS
Sioux Falls 0 0 0 — 0
Waterloo 2 2 2 — 6
FIRST PERIOD — 1. Waterloo, Matt Cameron (Kyle Haskins, Vladislav Firstov), 4:59, 2. Waterloo, Hank Sorensen (Wyatt Schingoethe, Joey Cassetti), 16:57, pp. Penalties — Wyatt Schingoethe, Wat (slashing), 9:01, Austen Swankler, SF (interference), 16:13, Dane Montgomery, Wat (interference), 18:58.
SECOND PERIOD — 3. Waterloo, Brehdan Engum (Emil Ohrvall, Sorensen), 10:31, pp. 4. Waterloo, Matej Blumel (Schingoethe, Ohrvall), 13:59, pp. Penalties — Swankler, SF (roughing), :42, Mason Palmer, Wat (roughing), :42, Teddy Lagerback, Wat (cross checking), 1:49, Artem Ivanyuzhenkov, SF (checking from behind, 10-minute misconduct), 2:02, Max Crozier, SF (roughing), 5:02, Sorensen, Wat (charging), 5:02, Jared Westcoff, SF (head contact), 7:11, Crozier, SF (kneeing), 8:34, Matt Kassel, SF (slashing), 9:08, Schingoethe, Wat (roughing), 9:08, Westcott, SF (slashing), 11:25.
THIRD PERIOD — 5. Waterloo, Lagerback (unassisted), 5:29, 6. Waterloo, Blumel (Ohrvall, Firstov), 11:08, pp. Penalties — Lagerback, Wat (slashing), :49, Brandon Tabakin, SF (slashing), 1:22, Sorensen, Wat (tripping), 2:31, James Marooney, Wat (tripping), 6:34, Westcott, SF (slashing), Kessel, SF (slashing), 13:05, Firstov, Wat (cross checking) 13:05, Kyle Haskins, Wat (cross checking), 14:42, Engum, Wat (double minor, high sticking), 17:49.
SHOTS ON GOAL
Sioux Falls 11 8 7 — 26
Waterloo 12 17 8 — 37
Goalies — Sioux Falls, Jaxson Stauber (26 shots, 22 saves). Josh Langford (11 shots, 9 saves). Waterloo, Evan Fear (26 saves). Referees — Nolan Bloyer, Kody Helbig. Linesmen — Killian McNamara, Alex Karabetsos.